PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan on Monday launched a five-day polio vaccination campaign in the province by administering vaccination drops to a child in Peshawar.

According to official information, 6.4 million children below five years of age would be administered polio vaccination during the campaign.

A total of 28,681 teams have been deployed for the vaccination including 25,579 mobile teams, 1,868 fixed teams, 1,104 transit teams and 130 roaming teams.

The chief minister said during the launching ceremony that special arrangements have been made and teams have been trained to avoid the spread of coronavirus during the vaccination campaign. He said that the vaccination campaign was impacted in Pakistan due to outbreak of coronavirus last year that led to increase in polio cases, but due to serious efforts of the KP government, now there had been considerable reduction in polio cases in the province.

Mahmood Khan said complete eradication of poliovirus from KP is among the top priorities of the provincial government. He said the KP government was taking concrete steps under a comprehensive strategy to eradicate polio. He said he was confident that the efforts of the provincial government in this regard will bear fruit.

Mahmood Khan said the eradication of poliovirus was a national cause, and all segments of society including Ulema, political leaders, teachers, parents and media must to join hands with the government to eradicate poliovirus and give a safe future to our next generation. He appealed to the parents to ensure provision of polio vaccination to all the children below the age of five years during the drive.

Currently, Pakistan and Afghanistan are the only two countries in the world which have not fully eradicated polio. The main cause behind the emergence of so many polio cases is refusal of parents to cooperate with the vaccination teams. Experts believe that polio vaccination efforts cannot succeed completely until the refusing parents are convinced to cooperate with vaccination teams.

While there is no cure for polio, vaccination is the most effective way to protect children from the crippling disease. With each vaccination of children below the age of five years, their protection against the virus is increased. No vaccination means more vulnerability to the virus particularly in Pakistan where it is endemic.


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